This from the Investor Relations section of the Shepherd Neame website:

Posted: 28 June 2016

Further to the announcement on Friday 10 June 2016, Shepherd Neame, the Kent-based brewer, pub and hotel operator, has completed its discussions with Enterprise Inns plc which has resulted in the purchase of seven freehold pubs in Kent, Sussex and Surrey. The purchase of the eighth pub is expected to complete in due course.

The pubs are:

  • Chequer Inn in Steyning, West Sussex
  • Crown & Anchor in Shoreham by Sea, West Sussex
  • The Farm House in West Malling, Kent
  • The Greyhound in Keston, Kent
  • Hen & Chickens in Bisley, Surrey
  • The Kings Head in Guildford, Surrey
  • The Sussex Oak in Warnham, West Sussex

All the pubs will continue to operate under their current lease, and during the past fortnight, representatives from Shepherd Neame have met with the licensees to discuss transitional arrangements and future investment plans.
The completion of the sale takes Shepherd Neame’s total number of pubs to 335, of which 59 are operated under management and 269 as tenanted and leased and seven under commercial free of tie leases.
All Shepherd Neame pubs will be operated under the Voluntary Code of Practice.

browser wars

This project's momentum continues to build, thanks to a major efficiency gain!

I discovered that it is 25% faster to use Google Chrome for updating the website!
Chrome really is a lean, mean, browsing machine, for sure!
I reckon it is 50% faster than MS Internet Explorer, and 20% faster than Mozilla Firefox. (Which I loved, and it was my 'go to' choice, when MS Internet Explorer let me down, Firefox was an uber-reliable next step.
Mozilla Rocks!.

But Chrome is even faster!
And, with 1,100 pubs to list, and with each 'proper' pub listing taking up to 60 minutes, (there is so much that has to be done to do justice to a good pub!), saving 10 to 15 minutes per pub is very good indeed!

Using Google Chrome brings the finishing line for this project about 25% closer!
Yippee! I'll drinkto that!

man drinking


A 'simple' Project Plan!
In order to complete this project in a reasonable timescale it is is necessary to have a project plan - and stick to it!


The aim is 'just' to list 100 pubs a month.
There are an estimated 1100 pubs to list - therefore 11 months work - there or there abouts. Simple!
The finish of this project will be the best excuse for a Christmas party!

Public Houses List - Menu item!
little 'niggle and annoyance' with the Public Houses List menu item, so that it now shows the number of pubs that have been listed for:

  • Brighton and Hove
  • East Sussex, and
  • West Sussex

As the project progresses, we will aim to achieve some degree of paririty bewtween East and West Sussex pub listings.
Also, this menu item now shows the number of pubs that have been listed in each area, and empty areas are now hidden.
This makes much more sense!

Latest Listings Feature!

Please do not pay too much attention to the 'latest listings' feature - on the right hand side.
New pubs are added in batches of 12 and 13 - to achieve 25 new pub listings a week.
But, each new listing will be very sparce, and is 'work in progress'.
It can take three days to fully process all of the new pub listings.
And then, when they have been processed, they are quickly replaced by another batch of 12 or 13 pubs.
And so the work goes on!

New Year

BeGolly, BeGosh!
A Very Happy New Year to everyone!

And a big, big 'thank you' to so many fantastic people in Sussex, and beyond, who have given this 'mad bat' project such a huge 'thumbs up', and support and encouragement, throughout 2015!
But, let's look forward to 2016, and what goodies that has to offer!

I now have my (32nd) 'cunning' project plan!
When I started this project with Rex Gibbons, I had the feeling that I was locked in a dark room with an unknown monster - with the lights off! (And, 'No', the monster wasn't Rex)!
For the last six months, I have felt that I have had this Pubs Project Monster, by the tail. (It was so good to grab a hold of it, and begin to swing it around)!

But, over the last month, I have been able to grab this Project by the throat, and give it a really, really good shake!

So, what have I determined?
Well, there is now a finishing line to the project in site!
If I list three pus a day, I have 15 months of work in prospect, to complete this project.
But, on some days, my more productive days, (like, when there is a Test Match for me to listen to, I will list 4 pubs)!

Now, I am not a betting man, but I would put a small wager on this project being 'finished', about two days before next Christmas.
But, if people want me to do website work for them, in between, and WANT TO PAY ME FOR IT, there will (inevitably) be some degree of slippage!

But, it is great to know that this 'impossible project' is certainly achievable, and within a realistic time scale!

And then? What next? Well, Sussex food producers, of course!
Does anyone know how you milk a sheep?
Presumably you do need to begin by catching it! Have you ever tried to catch a sheep?

Then what next, for you, the 'ewe', and this project?
Watch this space!



Pubs of the month....
I am so pleased that I started this in October with the Malt Shovel!
Our November pub of the month - the Royal Oak, Friday Street Rusper -  had 560 page views in the month, which I reckon to be a huge success.

Another fun-packed week - sorting out our December Pub of the Month - the Jolly Tannners at Staplefield.
Thinking ahead, January's pub is also lined up.
The White Horse at Maplehurst, and the Black Horse at Nuthurst have been listed.
And The Old House at Home at Chidham and the Royal Oak at Hooksway both to the West of the County, and the Red Lyon at Slinfold


Brewery News....
Yesterday, I dropped in to see Gary Lucas at Kissingate Brewery to say 'Hi' to Gary and his team.
Gary has invited me to an event, later in the month, which will be attended by other brewers, and, (hopefully), David Muggleton.
Meeting David has been close to the top of 'people to contact', and thanks to Gary, I now have his contact details.

I got to have a crafty taste of Gary's new 'Imperial Stout' (10%), which is drop-dead-gorgeous.
Most brewers add sugar to achieve this kind of strength, but the sugar adds only strength and no flavour.
As always, Gary has gone the extra mile,and has 'double mashed' the beer, which gives the desired strength, and flavours that are exceptional.
The Imperial Stout will all be bottled. This is certainly one to look out for, and savour.


Project Business Cards....
I have dished out 250 project cards.
I ordered 500 project cards frem Vistaprint, so have another box to be going on with.
I opened this, and they are for a french osteopath from Agen!
I wonder what he thinks of Sussex pubs!



The North Sussex CAMRA Spring Equinox Beer Festival is to be held on Saturday, 5th March, and Sunday, 6th March at the Drill Hall in Denne Road, Horsham RH12 1JF.
Tickets are £6.00 for Saturday butadmission is free on Sunday.
Saturday sessions are from 12 noo - 4 pam, and from 6.00pm - 10pm on Saturday.
The Sunday session is from 12 noon - 4.00pm

Tickets are available from:

  • Beer Essentials in East Street
  • The Malt Shovel Pub
  • Kings Brewery on the Jibilee Estate

john keeling talk

I was delighted to go over to the @tTheJollyTanners at Staplefield, last night, to join a group of 30+ people and listen to a fantastic, and very entertaining presentation given by John Keeling, the Head Brewer at Fullers!

And the three lovely ladies (with their very large jugs - for dispensing the beer), and shame on you for taking anything other than a PC meaning!

Seven of their beers were on offer, for sampling! I partook of an inch of five and declined the last two, as I was driving! These were the best accalimed, by the other tasters, so I know that I lucked out, but it was a privilidge just to be there!

This was a great opportunity to network with Wolfgang Gower, the new Fullers area rep, and meet John Keeling - 'the Man'!.

I was able to give out, I dunno, about 20 project cards, and get four people 'bookmark' and save the WSPG Pproject to their Home Screen!

It was a great 'coup' fror Chris Brazier to entice the great John Keeling and his team to travel so far South, out of London!

A cracking evening, and cracking beer Grommet!



Recently listed:


Compliments slip hastily prepared!
Some project cards posted to Suzy Bennett at Kitch Media, Chicheter.
Thank you Suzy!


Featured pub, the Royal Oak, Friday Street, Rusper has had 414 page views!
How about going there, some of you!


Twitter - 280 followers - one tweet last night netted 8 salmon!


To do!
Think about a trip out to our December pub of the month!

south downs cider


collecting apples

Address Line 1: The Lodge    

Address Line 2: The Green 

Post Town: Wilmington    

County:      East Sussex    

Post Code: BN26 5SP    

Telephone: 01273 926629    


Website url:    




Contacts: Greg and Oonagh Meyer

Our products are at the moment South Downs Cider in both dry and medium. They are cloudy still ciders with an ABV of 4.5%.  We also do South Downs Perry which is also a still cloudy perry with an ABV of 4.9%

The business was formed in October 2013 by Jeremy Christie and Greg Meyer. The company was founded to produce and market eastern counties style cider and perry produced from fruit sourced from within 10 miles of Wilmington. We utilize primary eating and cooking varieties of apples and pears that are of incorrect size and shape for supermarket consumption.

In 2013 we produced about 2000 liters of medium and dry cider marketed as South Downs Cider.  We have grown rapidly and in 2015 will produce 50,000 litres of cider and perry.  Currently we are producing cloudy / still cider and perry at 4.5% ABV.

In 2016 we will be introducing a clear carbonated cider to the product line.

Our products are currently being sold through 23 pubs and restaurants in Wilmington, Polegate, Litlington, Alfreston, Selmeston, Lewes, Laughton, Brighton and Hove.

Our contact details are:



facebook Join South Downs Cider on Facebook

twitter @southDownsCider    

Upload Image:

Great to get an email from:

Greg Meyer at

Greg and his business partner are based at Wilmington, East Sussex.
They aim to produce 50,000 litres of cider in 2015.
Apples from within 10 miles.
We will surely list them!

An enquiry from the Whie Heart at Wadhurst about a listing.
A Victorain pub that has just had a major refurb.
Local beers and good food.

Only too happy to help!
Will be progressing their listings, tomorrow!


earl of march 1

Following some sparring on Twitter with @suzyyybennett we have had great fun listing @theearlofmarch pub at Lavant.
Top food, top beer, top people and top pub! Fun, fun, fun!

And another blue marker added to our county map!

All contacts 'Outlooked' and communications filed locally, and in the Cloud! 
Job done!

Whoop-de-do! The Project now has the advantage of 'wheels'
This is known as the 'pocket rocket'.
62 mpg - and 62 miles per hour flat out!
(Hence the lowered suspension)!
Handy for nipping out to see producers and pubs, and a considerbale efficiency gain achieved.

Magnetic signs arrived on Monday!
Way to go!

640Kart 1

640Kart 2

640kart 3


It has been a busy, but enjoyable couple of weeks.

I met Chris Moore, the Licensing Officer with Horsham District Council.
He is going to spread the word with the pubs in the Horsham district.
Fab! Thanks Chris!

royal oak 2

We have a new pub listing - the Royal Oak at Rusper is our November featured 'pub of the month'.
The Royal Oak is an gem of a pub, and is a reminder of what pubs have lost in our fast-moving modern world.


aldo zilli

We welcome Chef Aldo Zilli as a Twitter follower!

alfie moore

And stand-up comic Alfie Moore!
We now have more than 250 followers. Yippee!

We liken Twitter to fishing for salmon!
How many casts do you have to make to catch a salmon?
How good at fishing are you?
As well as catching salmon, we catch the occaisional heavyweight tuna!
So we love the Aldo Zilli pic!


It has cost me a lot of money as I have been working my way through the Malt Shovel's menu! Highly recommended food from  Chef Charlie Boud!


Rugby World Cup!
What a shame that England was dumped out of the World Cup at the group stage.
Without doubt, New Zealand were worthy winners.
I found myself, at various times, supporting Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Japan, and Argentina!

Took in the first two England games at the excellent Kings Head pub in Billingshurst.
Thank you Colin Ganley - top man - with a top pub that is a shrine to rugby!


Brewery Reps

It was good to bump in to Vanessa Mason-Hill (Dark Star Brewery) who rocked up to enjoy the rugby final at the Malt Shovel.
Great car! - BMW mini inDark Stary livery. Cool number plate!

Speaking of brewery reps - was delighted to meet Will Hackman, who reps for Timothy Taylor. Great beer!

Last night I was delighted to meet Garry and Sam from Kissingate Brewery and had a good chin-wag over a couple of pints of Saracen Old Ale (from the Piligrim Brewery, Dorking) at the Malt Shovel.




Strolled across to the Broadbridge Heath Village Centre for a pint - thought it must be Christmas, as Langham's Best Bitter had just gone on as the guest beer. Happy, happy, happy, and snappy! 


I bagged-a-beer, uploaded it to the website, wrote tasting notes, shot off a couple of approving tweets, and sent a text to the BBHVC Manager, Phil Farrelly, to give him the 'thumbs up'!


Pint number two has just arrived....